Friday, April 9, 2010

Santa Prepares Us for Disillusionment

Doctor Weekes: "Most children in America are subjected to a particular from of indoctrination from their earliest years, in which they are repeated reinforced in their belief of a powerful figure who does not actually exist. However, evidence is given to them to support that belief by stories to make the child believe that the whole world believes in this particular mythic figure."

Step: "You're saying Stevie's problems are because we taught him to believe in Santa Claus?"

Doctor Weekes: "On the contrary, I think Santa Claus is, by and large, quite beneficial. When the child is finally allowed or forced to recognize the non-existence of Santa Claus, then the child is able to go through the vital intellectual process of reconstructing reality in light of new evidence, complete with back-forming new stories to account for past events. This prepares the child for many other disillusionments and gives her vital and well-supported experience is maintaining her grip on reality independent of the stories told to he at any given time."

Step: "So Santa Claus is good."

Doctor Weekes: "Santa Claus is not usually maladaptive and can be turned to a good end. I doubt many parents have that in mind when they tell them the ludicrous chimney story."

Step: "No I imagine not."

- transcribed from Orson Scott Card's Lost Boys audio book

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